East Asian Art
Writing Box (Suzuri-Bako) with Design of a DeerMade in Japan, Asia
Early 17th century
Attributed to Hon'ami Kōetsu, Japanese, 1558 - 1637
Lacquer on wood with lead and mother-of-pearl inlay
Currently not on view
1992-7-1a--dGift of the Friends of the Philadelphia Museum of Art, 1992
LabelThe theme used for the design of this box is taken from classical Japanese poetry, where autumn is often associated with the foliage turning to brilliant hues in the mountain hillsides of Japan. The cry of the deer, lonely for its mate and piercing the silence of the hills, has inspired generations of poets and artists. The motif of scattered autumn leaves carries over into the interior of the box, which is equipped with a water dropper and stone used for preparing ink.